From Possible to Probable: The Psychology of Competitive Advantage


  • Address: Department of Management, Darla Moore School of Business, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29212

Robert E. Ployhart.


This article responds to and extends the commentaries on the psychology of competitive advantage focal article. In general, the commentaries stressed that (a) the connection between industrial–organizational (I–O) psychology and strategy should go beyond resource-based theory and competitive advantage, (b) there are some existing examples of strategic I–O research, and (c) practitioners are already integrating I–O psychology with strategy. In this article, I use these commentaries as a means of generating actionable steps (e.g., research studies) to make the strategic adjacent possibility a reality. I conclude by arguing that understanding the psychology underlying firm competitiveness is the defining question of our time, and perhaps even the future of I–O psychology.